Monday, March 3, 2008

Immigration Bills in the 2008 Session

I've been emailed several times inquiring upon bills dealing with combating illegal immigration. I put together a briefing on the different bills being considered, and those bills are detailed below.

Which ones will see the ink of the Governor's pen? Based on what I have seen thus far, you could make an argument that all, some or none of them will make it all the way through the process (my money would be put on some or none).

The bills being considered are:

SB 2037; puts immigration enforcements on those companies who do business with the state.
(Passed the Senate 46-5; referred to House Judiciary B Committee)

All contracts entered into by agencies and institutions of the State of Mississippi shall include a provision requiring the contractor to be in compliance with all federal and state laws, including Section 31-5-17. A knowing or willing failure to comply with such provision shall be grounds for cancellation of all contracts with the contractor. The contractor shall be liable for any additional costs incurred by the agencies or the state because of the cancellation. The Office of Purchasing, Travel and Fleet Management, as well as the Personal Service Contract Board, shall adopt rules and regulations to carry out this law.

It also punishes public officers who commit a violation, unless reasonable effort to ensure compliance was made.

SB 2564; requires state agencies to verify the lawful presence in the U.S. of any person who applies for state, local or federal public benefits.

(Passed the Senate 52-0; referred to House Judiciary B Committee)

This law would also require any person that applies for public benefits to present an affidavit declaring he/she is in the United States legally. It would make it illegal to make a false statement regarding legal status, and it would require each state agency to present an annual report to the attorney general’s office concerning the compliance of this law.

SB 2823; provides criminal penalties to the aiding and abetting of immigration offenses.
(Passed the Senate 52-0; referred to House Judiciary B Committee)

This law would make it illegal to aid an illegal immigrant or resist cooperating with authorities in sharing information regarding immigration status. It would also allow for cooperative law enforcement between state and local entities regarding immigration matters. It would also require verification of citizenship of persons who are arrested.

SB 2988; creates the Mississippi Employment Protection Act.
(Passed the Senate 52-0; referred to House Judiciary B Committee)

This law would require all employers to use the E-verify system when hiring employees. It would exempt those employers who use E-verify from any liability, investigation or suit arising from this law. It also requires third-party employers that conduct business in Mississippi to also provide proof of registration and verification to any Mississippi employer with whom they do business. It gives employers to a July 1, 2011 deadline.

It exempts anyone who hires people to work on his/her private property for non-commercial purposes. It will make it a felony for any person to accept or perform employment for compensation knowing that the person is an unauthorized alien.

SB 3034; enhances the penalty for creation or use of false ID and creates crimes of aiding, abetting or transporting an unauthorized alien.
(Passed the Senate 52-0; referred to House Judiciary B Committee)

This law mixes some direct and indirect ways of combating illegal immigration. It enhances the penalty for illegal immigrants using false identification. It charges them with a felony and fines them up to $10,000 and/or 10 years in prison. It also makes it illegal to transport or harbor an unauthorized alien. Some vague exceptions include providing medical care, legal services, food and shelter to those immigrants. It would also not prohibit or restrict private charities from providing health services.

HB 1327
(Passed House 81-38; referred to Senate Economic Development Committee)

This bill would create a task force to study the impact of immigration, both legal and illegal, on poverty in Mississippi.

1 comment:

concerned citizen said...

Let's see if you people can back up all this talk. I work for a company in Vicksburg, Ms. called LTI. about a month ago the word got out on the yard that Immigration was coming and you should have seen the immigrants running for the gate hundreds of them, I know that they are workng as contractors, but I am sure the company seen what was happening but said , ( oh well it will fall on the Contractors offices) How long is this going to happen???? I think that these companies should be made examples of and then this kind of stuff will start to leave our state on it's own. But I think that these business's might have alot of stock owned by these rich politicians, so I think nothing will ever be done.... Prove me wrong.....